microbiome

my microbiota throng
one hundred trillion strong
my microbiome home
dwarfs my own genome

who hosts who, me or you
you the many, me the few
mostly we are symbiotic
superorganism exotic

night and day you hug me
always here to bug me
yet we get along quite nicely
my constant friends your ancestry

who hosts who, me or you
you the many, me the few
mostly we are symbiotic
superorganism exotic

by mass my massive mansions win
your tiny footprints light and thin
yet polling microbiota vox populi
such small numbers of cells am i

by all measures democratic
one cell one vote though some are xenic
my forty-sixer diploids somatic
just nine percent quite minoric

my microbiota throng
one hundred trillion strong
my microbiome home
dwarfs my own genome

is what i am brains or braun
more myocyte or neuron
i think and feel i must be both
but am i naked without my coat

is my microbiome not a part of me
or am i, the humanity, part of thee
the colonies are present when i pee
from their drama i cannot flee

(we are one superorganism
intrinsically)

mosquitos drink our blood
cows cheerily chew their cud
bees barf their precious pollen
i feed my gut biota battalion

half of what i eat is for them
others feed on poo and phlegm
hungry prevotella and bacteroides
joined by bold and stoic firmicutes

my body ringed by shanty towns
valleys of my axilla, highlands of my head
amongst the canyons of my toes
tales of trillions in their throes

the largest bunch shares my lunch
yet have no teeth to crunch and munch
secret societies of ecologic diversities
clustered in colonies and sequestered cities

plethoric species in chateaus and ghettos
live along the shores and shallows
of my alimentary canal’s hidden grottos
each dark meander like floral meadows

from mouth to colon peristaltic pipe
thrives throngs eating raw and ripe
each nook and cranny its own corral
varied ethnic mix of each locale

my microbiota throng
one hundred trillion strong
my microbiome home
dwarfs my own genome

no matter where we roam
we carry our trusted microbiome
who call our body home
we never are alone

each of us is unique
our populations keep
what we sow they help reap
when we are awake and asleep

my microbiota throng
one hundred trillion strong
i am not just the nine percent
but part of our community i augment

for as much as they ferment
they also help prevent
we live by mutual consent
live and rent this blended tent

i am the one hundred trillion
and also the human portion
we are family of different species
my buggies are my buddies
not vermicious cooties

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About Brad Werner

Technical Evangelist
This entry was posted in poetry and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to microbiome

  1. craighopton says:

    Wonderful! I love it!

    Like

    • Brad Werner says:

      Thank you! I really enjoyed writing this poem, however I tried to keep it from meandering in too many directions. More analogies and rhymes kept jumping out at me. 🙂

      Like

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